Breaking Down Ben Joyce’s Dynamite Pitching Day

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If you haven’t seen it by now, Tennessee pitcher Ben Joyce rewrote the history book on Sunday in Knoxville. During the seventh inning of Tennessee’s win against Auburn, Joyce delivered a 105.5 mile per hour fastball to the plate, thus setting a record for the new fastest pitch in college baseball history.

As soon as the official statistic came out, the internet ran wild reacting to the historic moment from Tennessee’s redshirt junior pitcher.

The craziest part about Joyce’s performance on Sunday is that the record-breaking pitch wasn’t even an outlier. That’s right. The record-breaking pitch wasn’t even an outlier. Had to say it twice for proper emphasis.

According to RTI’s Ryan Schumpert after the game, 28 of Joyce’s 53 total pitches were clocked in at 103 mph. 15 of Joyce’s pitches were at 104 mph, and on three separate occasions, Joyce touched the 105 mph mark.

After the Sunday game, Codify brought up an excellent statistic on Twitter that really helps put Joyce’s numbers into perspective. According to Codify, “no MLB pitcher on record has thrown more than 15 pitches at 103+ MPH in a game.” That means that Joyce’s 28 pitches of 103 mph were, at worst, double the amount that any major league pitcher has even thrown in a single game.

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See Also from RTI: Tennessee’s Ben Joyce Records Fastest Pitch in College Baseball History

During his four innings of work on Sunday, Joyce was terrific in a spot that he normally hasn’t found himself in often. Joyce was the immediate reliever for starting pitcher Drew Beam in the sixth inning and carried the Vols home the rest of the way.

Joyce struck out six batters on Sunday without giving up a walk in his four innings. In what can only be described as a dominant performance, Joyce only saw 12 batters en route to 12 outs.

Major league standout pitcher Aroldis Chapman is widely regarded for having the biggest cannon of an arm in the big leagues. According to the Guinness Book of World Records in 2010, Chapman set the record with a blistering pitch clocking in at 105.1 mph. Over the next few years, Chapman would supposedly hit 106 mph on the mound, but there was controversy regarding the different radar guns that were in play.

With the 105.5 mph pitch from Tennessee’s Ben Joyce on Sunday, Joyce now has the top spot on D1 Baseball’s Heat Sheet by a fair margin. The next two behind Joyce are Iowa’s Brody Brechet at 101 mph and Gonzaga’s Will Kempner at 100 mph.

In addition to the ranking, D1 Baseball’s David Seifert also said that the “previous Heat Sheet record was held by Joe Boyle (Notre Dame) who pumped 102-octane in the Northwoods League during the summer of 2018.”

Breaking down the fastest pitch in college baseball history is somewhat tough because of the massive scope it already covers. We could sit here and say that Joyce’s pitch is the fastest in Tennessee history, fastest in SEC history, fastest among all SEC players this year, fastest among all players this year – but at the end of the day, all of that is simply rounded-up with one sentence. Ben Joyce now has the fastest pitch in college baseball history.

And soon enough, he could be busting down Chapman’s door for the true spot of the fastest recorded pitch in history.

Ric Butler is a Knoxville based sports media personality who has covered University of Tennessee athletics since 2017. Most recently, he served as the lead writer for the website of a local radio station. Ric also helped create and host a daily radio show called “The Blitz." Ric’s passion for sports, smooth vocal, and infectious personality have made him popular with both his peers and Vol Nation. Originally from Dallas, Ric didn’t grow up riding horses to school. But he did dream of the big city lights. When not chasing down the latest Tennessee story, Ric can be found watching the WWE, often attempting their moves in an embarrassing fashion.